Aubrey huffed at the student before her, she honestly couldn't believe a grown-ass man would have such narrow-minded ideas, yet here she was, enduring the discourse of how being a wealthy straight kid could hurt your life and job opportunities. Being a GTA sucked, if it weren't because she needed the money (no matter how low the pay was), she honestly would have given up sooner. To be fair, Professor Rawlings didn't look pleased either.
Now don't get her wrong, if it were earlier in the semester, she would've shown more patience to him. But honestly, Aubrey had been working like crazy since the midterms were around, and she was exhausted. She barely slept for more than 3 hours and she was lucky if she could have an evening for herself. To be completely honest, she's not sure of when that happened for the last time since she's always grading stuff, preparing classes and all that jazz. She was really grateful for the opportunity Victor was giving her, but sometimes it felt like her work was suffocating her, she knew she needed a break.
She was into her own thinking when her phone buzzed, drawing her attention.
"Hey so, idk how to say this… Come collect your gf. -B"
Aubrey frowned, checking her previous messages. Emily hadn't texted her yet, and their previous conversation had ended with a "see u tomorrow cute stuff ;)", it was a little odd coming from the ball of sunshine that she had for a girlfriend, but she understood college was a bit harsh this week for both her and Emily.
"And that's on being a privileged twat", Professor Rawlings said once the class was over, dropping a pile of papers in front of her desk, making the blonde smile. "They say college opens your mind but sometimes it just doesn't happen."
Aubrey took her phone, deciding she would go check on Emily once she had a bit of free time. "Privilege is hard to acknowledge." Victor hummed in agreement. "I still can't believe he said that with his whole chest."
"Mason is a good kid overall, so I hope he can learn something this semester."
Aubrey took her folder and bag from the chair she occupied since the beginning of the class. "Well, if someone can change his mind it's you. I'm sure he's in good hands".
The man smiled softly, sitting down "Stop with that, the job is already yours." he said good-naturedly. "Now go, enjoy your weekend, you've been working long hours these past weeks. I'll see you on Monday to start rock and rolling." he said hitting the pile of papers.
Aubrey groaned internally but thanked her boss nonetheless. Being a GTA could be a pain in the ass, but she kinda loved it. It was cool and she was enchanted with the idea of being somewhat of a teacher. Plus, it was about time she moved out of the dusty, old apartment she had. She was actually thinking of telling her girlfriend to move in with her, as she had already found a place she knew Emily will love. Still, since she hadn't got the time to move her own stuff yet and she wanted it to be a surprise, it was better to keep it to herself for a little longer.
Emily, her sweet Emily, if she only knew. Aubrey found herself smiling at the thought of her girlfriend.
Suddenly her phone buzzed again. She stared at her phone.
"Hey blondie, Emily is feeling a tad sad. She skipped class, you might wanna check up on her. Bring snacks :)) x- Chloe."
"Is everything okay, Aubrey?" the blonde looked at her boss, staring back at her through his big glasses with a fatherly look on his face.
"Yes, thanks professor. I'll see you on Monday."
"Take care, kid."
Aubrey walked through the campus, bag in her shoulder and hands occupied with two coffees, for her and her girlfriend each. She knew Emily liked to drink hot beverages when she was feeling down.
Once she was inside of the Bellas house she thought of how her girlfriend sometimes complained about needing her own space, and how excited she was to let the brunette know her little secret. She walked to Emily's room, knocking softly on the door.
"Come in." she heard her girlfriend say very softly, voice raw like she had been crying.
"Hey baby, Chloe told me you stayed in." the blonde dropped her bag and made her way to the girl, who was cuddled on her bed.
"Of course she did." Emily said, wrapping herself on the bedsheets. "You can leave, I'll be fine."
The blonde left their drinks on the drawer beside Emily's bed. She kicked her shoes off, and climbed in with her girlfriend. She could feel the younger girl stiffing, so she quickly brought her to her chest, giving the tall brunette no choice but to look at her. "Hi." she smiled softly.
"I told you I'll be fine." Emily told her as she closed her eyes, tears leaking her eyes. "Don't you have a class to assist?"
"I brought your favorite drink." Aubrey reached out to wipe the tears from her face, kissing her cheek softly. "And Victor dismissed his class early, plus I know you don't really enjoy being on your own when you're sad."
Emily then hugged her girlfriend, burying her face on the blonde's chest. "Sorry."
Aubrey hummed as she played with Emily's hair. "What was that about? You know you can come to me every time." The younger girl sniffed.
"You're always busy." she said simply. "You barely have time for me anymore."
Aubrey frowned. She thought for a moment. She had indeed been busy lately, even more since she started working with professor Rawlings, but she always tried to make time for Emily, like right now.
"You didn't even notice, did you?." Emily looked hurt. But Aubrey's mind was blank. What did she not notice?
"Alright." the brunette got up, out of her girlfriend's embrace. "I'll see you later, Bree." she said leaving a very confused Aubrey behind.
"What part of come collect your gf isn't clear?" Beca texted her later that day when Aubrey was reading one of her student's essays.
"Why is legacy crying? Did she say no?"
"Oh shit. Did you two break up?"
Her phone buzzed furiously as the blonde read her friends' texts. Aubrey hit the answer button, putting the device on her left ear.
"Hey, I texted you."
The ex-Bella captain rolled her eyes. "I'm aware, Beca."
"I just wanted to check up on you. Is everything okay? You know, with everything that's going on?"
Aubrey took her glasses off, her head beginning to hurt a bit. "To be honest I don't know." she answered. "Emily is mad at me and I have no idea why, any clue?"
Beca stayed silent for a bit. "So I might overheard something when she and Chloe were talking."
"It's uh…" her friend paused as if debating how to say it. "Your anniversary."
Aubrey felt her blood run cold, heart dropping in her chest. There was no way in hell or Hogwarts she forgot their anniversary. She quickly looked over her shoulder, to the calendar hanging on the back of the door, almost afraid to look at the day.
She forgot her anniversary.
"Bree?" Beca called her, pulling her out of her thoughts.
"I forgot our anniversary." she stated.
"That's uh… A bummer." the tiny brunette sounded a bit uncomfortable. "I'm sure you can fix it-"
"No Beca like I forgot our anniversary." Aubrey said a bit more stressed this time, tears begging to sting in her eyes.
"Hey relax, people do that all the time."
"This is our first year together. Oh god, I forgot our first anniversary." The blue-eyed began pacing around the room, her mind went fast to Emily's sad face when they met earlier. The hurt written all over her voice when she dismissed her. "Of course she was upset." Aubrey ran her hand through her hair. "I'm a horrible girlfriend."
"Alright, I agree you're a horrible person overall but you make a pretty decent girlfriend." Beca answered through the phone. "Listen, is it okay to neglect your partner on a special day like this? No…"
"Thank you, Beca." Aubrey said bitterly.
"Let me finish, you dumb blonde" she continued, "But Emily understands you're having a hard time at work. Besides, you have a good reason as to why you've been all secretive with her."
Aubrey nodded to herself, Beca did have a point. She looked at the clock. 5:40. So maybe she wasn't a completely lost cause anymore. But if she was doing this, she would do it right.
"Beca, I need your help setting everything up."
"There's my captain. What do you need me to do?"
"I'll text you the details."
"Hey Em, I'm outside. Come meet me?"
Emily narrowed her eyes at her girlfriend's text, the first one she got in the day, no less. She wondered if she should go. She loved Aubrey to death, and at some point, she knew she was being a bit unfair to her. But she was so excited to maybe share something special on their anniversary, that she might have lost perspective of things.
Beca looked at the troubled girl. "You should go. I know you're upset, but maybe she has a good reason."
"I don't know," Emily told her friend, right at the moment the bell rang, announcing Aubrey was waiting for her.
"Just trust me, legacy."
Emily nodded and walked to the door. She checked herself in the mirror, at least she wasn't in her pj's anymore, Chloe had made sure of that. She looked tired, and her eyes were a bit red, but other than that, she looked good.
So she opened the door, revealing a nervous Aubrey. She took a look at her girlfriend, feeling a pang in her chest. Aubrey looked beautiful, she had her reading glasses, which Emily picked for her, and she looked something like a mess herself, so she felt better about her look. The blonde also had a single rose, which she handled to her with a tight smile.
"Hi," Aubrey said tucking her hands in her jeans. "So I know you have a very good reason to not listen to me, but… Em…" the blonde took her hand. "Please, come with me. There's something I want to show you."
Emily scanned her girlfriends face, Aubrey looked guilty, sad even.
She said yes.
They jumped into the blonde's car in a somewhat uncomfortable silence, both wanting to reach out but not knowing how. Emily wanted to apologize for making a big deal out of this, and Aubrey just felt awful altogether. After a really short drive, Aubrey pulled out of the way and parked her car. She looked at the brunette with a small smile and motioned her to get out of the car.
Emily looked at the building before her, she didn't know where they were, nor what her girlfriend wanted to do. Aubrey sensed her hesitance, and took her hand carefully, half expecting the young girl to pull away.
Emily was done fighting, so she squeezed her back and they walked in.
Quietly, they got in the elevator. Emily noticed the recently painted walls, the clean, shiny fancy floors, deducing the building should be new, but not fully understanding why her girlfriend would take her there.
"Here, this is the one," Aubrey said after they passed a few doors.
The tall brunette walked into the apartment 5-B.
The first thing she noticed was the elegant wooden hallway, and the white walls that opened on the side to reveal a beautiful kitchen, one that Emily surely wouldn't mind baking in. At the end of the hallway, Emily focused on the dim light that should belong to candles. The brunette looked at her girlfriend, confused. It was a nice apartment, but Aubrey already owned one (a small one-bedroom apartment that was a bit too far for her liking, but still, it was their safe place).
Aubrey urged her into the hallway, pulling her hand softly. "I think you'll like the living room better."
Emily obeyed in silence and walked to the living room. The picnic blanket that lied on the floor caught her attention first, then she noticed the pair of pillows, the picnic basket, and the few candles that kept the room lit for them. Behind the romantic setting, there were big windows that allowed her to take in the sight of the city in its night glow. She searched for her girlfriend's gaze again, confused.
"Aubrey this is really nice but what are we doing here?" She said, sounding a bit harsher than she first intended.
The blonde walked to her nervously. "So I… Forgot that our anniversary was today."
Emily raised her eyebrows. "You don't say."
"And I've been crazy busy for a while," Aubrey stated matter of factly. "But, I didn't mean to."
The tall girl sighed, lifting her shoulders in a hint of understanding. "I know your job is important." Aubrey smiled, feeling a bit more confident.
"Yes but you're important too, baby." She started, thinking for a moment. "You know how for a couple of months you've been talking about moving out of the Bellas' house for your next year?" Emily tilted her head but nodded nonetheless. "Well, I was first gonna offer you to stay with me in my old apartment. But then I realized there's not enough space for your stuff, and how it's a bit far from Barden for you to come and go every day. So I uh… I started looking for a new one where we could, you know… Move in together." she said almost in a whisper.
Emily took a bit of time trying to wrap her mind around what her girlfriend wanted to say, opening her eyes in surprise. "You… This…"
Aubrey nodded a few times. "A month ago I found this one, the building is new, and there's plenty of space for us and if you'd like to get a dog, there's space for that too. But uh, I needed some extra money to start paying for it, and I wasn't going to ask you for it because it was meant to be a surprise, and you're still in college. So I asked Professor Rawlings if I could help him with something else. At first he was a bit surprised but when I talked to him, he's all for helping young couples to get on their feet."
"No please, just. Let me finish." Aubrey stopped her with her hand. "I'm not a jerk, Em. I know when our anniversary is, I just." she sighed tiredly. "I was so focused on getting this done for us that, it kinda slipped my mind what day it was. I imagine my entire life with you, baby." she said reaching out to caress Emily's cheeks. "I love you with everything I am, with every single beat of my heart. I can't imagine living in a world when I'm not with you. I feel so safe around you, and I know you feel that way too, my dear. You're everything I dreamed of but you're so much more than that. You make me want to be better, and I like me better when I'm with you."
Emily fought back the tears, "Do you want me to move in, or are you proposing already?"
Aubrey chuckled. "Move in with me." She answered. "I mean yes, of course I want to marry you someday but, right now, move in with me."
The tall brunette leaped into her arms, squealing. "Of course I will."
Aubrey caught her, a bit surprised. "Wait, I thought you were mad at me?"
"I mean I was upset…" Emily pulled back a bit from her embrace, biting her lip. "But I was aware that you were working long hours, and since we didn’t make plans I assumed we weren't doing anything special, so really I don't know why I'm this worked up over it."
Aubrey's heart dropped at how disappointed her girlfriend sounded. She smiled at her, a bit ashamed that she hurt the girl so much. "I'm truly sorry, my love, I know I effed up." she said, kissing Emily's hand. "I promise it won't happen again, never. And I'll make it up to you" she looked at the improvised picnic that was behind them. "I know this isn't much but…"
Emily quickly rushed to kiss her girlfriend. "I forgive you. And I'm also sorry for the way I talked to you earlier, I blew up things out of proportion."
"No, you're allowed to be upset at me, angry even." The blonde reassured.
"Still, I'll be more willing to listen next time."
"One year and we're still learning, aren't we?" Aubrey said, looking lovingly at her.
Emily flashed her a smile, nodding. "I love you, Aubrey Posen. With all my heart."
"I love you, Emily Junk." she answered. "So shall we?" she motioned to the picnic.
"God yes, I'm starving."